Casa Flores, on Ordóñez Lasso in Cuenca's west end, supplies quality mattresses, custom curtains, bedding and other household items to Cuencanos and expats alike.
You can choose from hundreds of different fabrics and styles for your curtains, pillow covers or comforter.
But there's only one Manolo Flores, and only on Monika Flores, the bilingual owners of Casa Flores.
Manolo and Monika, along with Monika's sister Veronika and her mother, and the other staff, become friends with just about everyone who has done business with them here in Cuenca.
The business, which Manolo's father started over 50 years ago, has been growing ever since.
It began as a car seat fabrication business. His father bought fabrics for car seats.
Before long, customers came to him just to buy his fabrics for household use.
"Then, 20 years ago, the curtain business started up, and we began importing them, as well as rugs and carpets.
"It is too expensive now to import rugs, although we have a few," Manolo told us. "We have branched out into mattress sales. They are our best sellers since we just became one of the primary distributors in Azuay province."
Casa Flores sells mattresses produced by Chaide y Chaide, the best mattresses made in Ecuador. (Chaide y Chaide also export to the US.)
There's a wide selection of singles (una plaza y media), doubles (dos plazas), queens and kings (both known as dos plazas y media, with the queen at 150 cm and the kings at 180 cm). All of them are available as pillow-top mattresses as well as regular ones.
The Casa Flores prices for these Chaide y Chaide mattresses are as low as we've seen here in Cuenca, due to their volume purchasing. Prices range from just over $100 for a lower-end twin to considerably less than $1,000 for a top-end pillow-top queen.
"Curtains are also an important part of our business," Manolo told us.
They've done a great job in the large condo building we've been living in. Just about every apartment has different heights or lengths of windows, so there are no cookie-cutter templates to make the job easier.
After you pick out the material(s) for your curtains, Manolo, Paul or Christian will come over to your house or condo and measure the dimensions for your curtains, based on where the curtain rods already are, or where you want them installed.
Then they have a seamstress sew the curtains. Paul or Christian will be back, usually within a week, to install them, along with any curtain rods that you need.
If you're lucky enough to have standard sized windows, you can also choose from many pre-made curtains.
At Casa Flores, you'll also find bedding items, such as comforters, some rugs and carpets, a few lamps and other decorative items for your home.
That's in addition to the dozens (probably hundreds) of different fabrics available for just about any purpose.
Manolo's wife Monika, whose English is almost perfect, is often in the store helping customers.
I think one of the most important services we offer is being right here in our business, helping people directly. I choose all the fabrics, and I choose things I would like in my own house, not just what sells. I know what it's like to have poor service, and I don't like being treated badly. So, I am available to help because I want you to love my work and know that I will assist you until you have what you are truly happy with.
I like the directness of foreigners, actually. It makes it easier to get things done. If they don't know what they want, I can help there, as well. I also will go out and help people learn how to shop and bargain here. There is always a discount when you shop here, you just have to ask for it. Many people don't realize this so I teach them.
We know this is true, as we've often been in the store when Monika is out in the city helping newcomers to Cuenca.
If you hire a Cuencano to help you buy household items, don't be surprised if they receive a cash rebate or an item from the vendors you visit. This is something that Monika does not do, however.
Casa Flores is located on Ordóñez Lasso just before the Oro Verde hotel (if you're coming from downtown Cuenca). It's on the north (right) side of the road. Keep an eye out for the sign (in the first photo, above).
Hours are 9 a.m. until 1 p.m., and then 3 p.m. until 7 p.m.
Come in and take a look at their huge showroom. Meet this wonderful family and test a mattress. Yes, there's actually room to flop down on a mattress, something you can't do in most stores.
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I just want to thank you both soooo much for creating this web site. I am originally from Cuenca but moved to New York 11 years ago and have not being back since. My husband and I are planning on visiting Cuenca over the Summer and this web site has helped me a lot.
When I came to the US we still had the "sucre," the bus ride cost 1,000 sucres and a pack of trident gum would cost 3,000 sucres. I am very nervous to go back, but thanks to your web site I now know what to expect.
My husband is American and Captivating Cuenca has taught him a lot about what my great city has to offer, things that I had forgotten about myself! :)
Thank You both so much! I cannot wait to visit Cuenca!!